San Diego Police Department car in the city center. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.
San Diego Police Department car in the city center. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

All offices of the San Diego Regional Center were closed Wednesday in response to the mass shooting at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino.

Ron Plotkin of the San Diego center announced via Facebook that the precautionary decision was made “for security for the staff, clients and services providers that frequent the SDRC offices.”

“With shock and horror, we share the tragic mass shooting that occurred at the Inland Regional Center,” Plotkin wrote. “Our hearts are open with supportive prayers to those in the cross-hairs of this senseless, horrific event.”

All four regional offices in San Diego were closed. The center in Imperial County was also closed as a precaution.

SDRC announced at 2:20 p.m. via their Facebook page that all offices would reopen Thursday for regular business hours.

Officers were sent to the San Diego location at 4355 Ruffin Road at 12:30 p.m., but nothing out of the ordinary was reported, San Diego Police Department spokesman Officer Joshua Hodge said.

Details of the shooting at the San Bernardino treatment center for people with developmental disabilities were still sketchy, and the motivation for the attack was not immediately known.

San Bernardino police said this afternoon that 14 people were killed and another 17 were wounded in the shooting at the center at 1365 S. Waterman Ave., which occurred at about 11 a.m.

Authorities said the shooting involved three gunmen, and they were believed to be wearing body armor and armed with “long guns.” They fled the scene in a dark-colored SUV. Around 4 p.m., police tracked down what appeared to be the SUV in San Bernardino and a gunbattle ensued.

At least one suspect was apparently killed in the exchange of gunfire, which left the SUV riddled with bullets. A second suspect was believed to be inside the vehicle, either dead or seriously wounded, but with an automatic weapon strapped to his chest.

A third suspect managed to flee into a neighborhood, and as of late afternoon, police and sheriff’s deputies were going house-to-house in a massive containment area.

Officials from the San Diego Blood Bank offered their assistance to LifeStream Blood Bank in San Bernardino to help supply blood to victims of the shooting. LifeStream was on lockdown during the shooting and was unable to continue blood collections, impacting the Inland Empire hospitals where victims were taken, according to the blood bank.

San Diego County Democratic Party Chair Francine Busby said the shooting in San Bernardino hits close to home for many San Diegans who have ties there. But Busby said prayers are not enough in the face of gun violence.

“It is time that we acknowledge these acts as a form of terrorism,” Busby said. “It is time that we focus attention and resources to protect American lives at home with the same determination that we do abroad. It is time for our leaders to stand up, grow a collective backbone and organize to defeat the gun lobby and bring about common sense reforms that would save lives. When our hopes are not enough, our voices and our votes are the only way to stop this madness.”

According to the facility’s Facebook page, the Inland Regional Center has nearly 670 staff members and provides services to more than 30,200 people with developmental disabilities and their families in San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

— Wire reports 

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